Despite experiencing a few challenges, booth owners inside the festival village in Road Town are reporting a successful year.
Many booth owners had to purchase new building materials to construct their temporary space at the village since previously-purchased materials were either destroyed in the hurricanes or looted. They were also faced with a shorter festival period this year due to the territory’s financial constraints.
However, several business owners told BVI News the 2018 festivities has still been a surprisingly profitable year.
“I’ve been here for six years and this was the best carnival I’ve seen here. Sales, everything [is good],” Jerome Hopkins said.
“The place is smaller and it’s just nicer and better. The shortness of the village and the fewer booths make every booth make money this year.”
Hopkins said he believes, going forward, the number of booths should be kept at a minimum, similar to this year.
Like many others, he also had to purchase new materials. However, Hopkins happily said, “the first night cover the cost of everything”.
He said last night’s sales were not as high as previous days partly because it was a day before many persons got paid, which, for most, is usually on a Friday.
Hopkins also believed the price to enter the village could have been made cheaper to enable more persons to enter the village.
Ticket prices on paid nights were about $25, BVI News understands.
Owner of the Strong Black Woman bar Corinne McFarlley also said she was satisfied with her profits, so far this year.
“It (festival) was short but one of the best. The line of profit was good, it was very good,” she told BVI News.
She also said she incurred additional expenses having to purchase new materials this year. She said roughly $2,000 was spent for her to be at the village this year and three-quarters of that sum went towards purchasing building materials.
Mcfarlley, in the meantime, commended the persons who came out nightly and patronised the respective businesses.
Things fairly ok
BVI News also spoke to Alister Gumbs of Stone’s booth, who gave a modest rating for his business’ success at festival this year.
Stone’s – a family-owned business – have been operating for more than 25 years at the festival village, Gumbs told BVI News.
He said the family brought back the business to the village to service thier loyal customers and not necessarily to make a profit; though they remain hopeful.
Taking into consideration everything the territory went through over the past year, Gumbs said: “We were surprised at how things went.”
“I wouldn’t say that this was a profitable year but at least things turned out ok to give us encouragement to come back next year.”
He said it was difficult to rate this year with other years.
Their booth will remain open 24/7 until Sunday.
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